Chicken Coop Chatter©
I Can, freeze and dehydrate fruits and vegetables throughout the year. Fruit Leather is popular and literally any fruit, berries or vegetables can be made into leather. I do not flavor or sweeten my fruit leathers, however you can if you choose. Just flavor to taste.
I place the fruit or vegetables in my crockpot with a little water. Cook on high until soft. Spoon the fruit or vegetables into a food mill and puree'. Strain if there is too much liquid in the puree'.
Though I have tray liners for my dehydrator; when doing leather I use plastic wrap to cover the trays. Spread the puree' on the plastic wrap (within 1/2 inch of the edges), dehydrate, then rather than remove the leather from the plastic wrap, I simply roll it up in the wrap it's been drying on, then store in air tight containers. This saves me the effort of removing from the drying sheets then wrapping. Dehydrate until still pliable but dried through (no soft un-dried areas). The average temperature setting is 145-150 degrees. This can take from 4-8 hours so check it every hour or so after 3 hours. If you have left over puree' just put into freezer containers or freezer bags, flatten as you release all the air from the bags. Place in freezer flat which takes a lot less room than containers or if just set in without flattening.
NOTE: I prefer the square sided dehydrators over the round. Reason? Because I can get a whole lot more into them. The round ones claim to have more even heat and circulation, but I've had no problems with mine heating or circulating properly.
You can dehydrate in the oven, air dry or sun dry. Each method works, though the time factor can vary dramatically. Air and Sun drying uses no electricity, which you may find advantageous.
(Click the link below for a good buy on the Excalibur Dehydrator and Preserving publication.)
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